Iris Huongbo

Iris Houngbo or better known by their Musical moniker @akasublime is a conceptual Artist and Community Organizer based on the ( Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations colonially known as “Vancouver British Columbia.” i’s work is often a question or conversation about community, mental health, holding/ letting go of grief, healing work, queer and trans identity, uplifting marginalized people (especially pertaining to black Queer and Transgender people/ black fems ) and exploring self-identity. 

Creating work from a queer non-cisgender/non-white landscape, Houngbo is often very vocal about their work being for everyone but having it be especially for black people of Queer and Trans experience. The work often serves as a love letter, affirmation and thank you note for themselves and so many others who are living, holding and sharing familiar experiences. 

Being first generation immigrant to two African immigrant parents, Houngbo has often taken references for their work from their upbringing in East Africa and old family photos, mixing that with their experience of being an immigrant, navigating their queerness and growing up/ living here in North America. Often finding ways to do so that doesn’t limit them from having to choose whether to tell stories about their Culture or their Queerness. 

Houngbo’s mediums include Music and Sound Production, DJing, Writing, Painting, Fabric work, and Photography/video work that includes portraiture/self-portraiture and photojournalism. Iris is also a fashion stylist and has assisted in doing so for both her own work and a few others.

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